The Huck Finnification of Education

“83” flickr photo by Sharon Gerald https://flickr.com/photos/sgerald/24608048596 shared under a Creative Commons (BY-SA) license

Earlier this week I attended a Creativity Workshop put on by the International Center for Studies in Creativity.

I want to share just one activity we went through in which I inadvertently Huck Finnified education. Now to be fair, all I really remember about Huck Finn is him + raft + river = freedom. That seems like a good direction for some (lots) of education to go.

The activity was a story-boarding exercise that is meant to help you to plan for reaching your goals. You get a 6 or 8 panel sheet and start by drawing your starting point in panel one and your end point in the last panel. You then fill in the blanks in between, making them up as you go. It being a creativity workshop you were free to be free thinking, so somehow mine involved a gondola and Huckleberry Finn. Despite (or maybe because of) those silly bits, I was able to maybe see some stepping stones to a less silly goal.

Here is the legend for what you are about to witness

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…and here is the sheet, pre-‘art’

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The beginning: a class with PowerPoint stinking onto students. PowerPoint really is the Nickelback of ed-tech, isn’t it?

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The end goal: learning whilst floating down a river on a raft like Huck Finn

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How do we get there? I don’t know! Maybe this is step one: Screen share from devices to screens on the side of the room.

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And then what? I don’t know! Maybe this is the next step. Why even those side screens. Step 2 was silly. Let’s just share device to device. Also less walls now somehow.

20170524_152148What is even the next step? Who knows! Maybe this ridiculous step. We can just share device to device now so we can take the imaginary gondola down to the river. How come gondolas aren’t used as public transit options by the way?20170524_152748

And then what? This is so ridiculous now does it even matter? Oh yeah! We’re at the river. Let’s get on these rafts. Huck Finn time.

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Now we can go full Ed-Huck Finn.

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The whole silly affair.20170526_131602

You may be able to use this story-boarding activity to actual good use yourself. try it out!

 

Tweeter & Melancholy Man

Daily Create 1964 #MakeASongBoring

**Sing in your brain to the tune of The Traveling Wilburys “Tweeter And The Monkey Man”**

Tweeter and  Melancholy Man were okay for cash

They slept through the night after watching some M*A*S*H*
His underwriter boss had a brother named Dan
For reasons quite explained he loved his brother Dan

Tweeter was an undergrad and once went to Vietnam
And found out the easy way how to order Banh
Yesterday bought tickets to see the Jersey Boys
So they hopped onto a local bus called the number 9

And the drapes came down, all the way to here
Never saw them when they were open
But now I see them them when they’re closed

The underwriter boss kind of liked Melancholy Man
Even back in childhood didn’t mind seeing him now and then
Dan got married at forty to racket salesman Bill
He made business calls to Melancholy Man from an office down the hall.

It was out on Daisy road – Tweeter at the wheel
They pulled into Denny’s – they could hear them tummies growl
The underwriter boss pulled up and said “Breakfast’s on me
If you don’t order extra sausage now you’ll pay for it yourself.”

And the drapes came down, all the way to here
Never saw them when they were open
But now I see them them when they’re closed

A Dodge Caravan rolled up, station wagon close behind
Tweeter took his kleenex out and wiped off his hands
The underwriter boss was left to get in his sedan
Near the empty lot by that other piece of land

Next day the underwriter boss he had a belly ache
tummy taking the whole thing personal, didn’t care about the toots
Dan had told him many times it was you to me who said
In Denny’s everything’s lethal man even their salad

And the drapes came down, all the way to here
Never saw them when they were open
But now I see them them when they’re closed.

“Boring.” flickr photo by chrismurf https://flickr.com/photos/chrismurf/192377530 shared under a Creative Commons (BY-SA) license

 

Introducing the PhysicaLMS

Now available at low, low prices from my as-yet-unnamed ed-tech startup: a physical Learning Management System. The physicaLMS. It’s real life. Outside of the Internet. It’s in your hands. For reals.

Here’s the assignment dropbox in action..

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Simulation of receiving assignment instructions for PhysicaLMS dropbox
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Exporting work from PhysicaLMS to put into the drop box

Here’s the quiz tool in action.

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Submitting a quiz
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Receiving graded quiz

Here’s the grades tool in action.

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Searching through physicaLMS for grades. It allows you to add up your scores yourself.

Here is the content tool in action.

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physicaLMS allows you to add the content that you want.

Here is the workspace tool in action: Not entirely sure if this one really exists in a traditional online LMS. I guess it sort of does here and there.

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Take work out of physicaLMS if you want. Put it back in if you want. Do work in it or out of it if you want.

What physicaLMS can do that your traditional online LMS can’t:

  • Learner choice of what’s in it and how it’s structured.
  • Learner choice of what comes out of it.
  • Learner security of not being surveiled at any time.

What physicaLMS can’t do that a traditional LMS can:

  • Ummmm can’t like do a discussion board, I guess.
  • Can’t add up grades for me. I’d have to do that myself.
  • Can’t decide for me which content I should see.
  • Can’t let a bunch of people look into my ‘behaviours’.

Here’s how to share your work in physicaLMS

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Take your work out to share it.

Here’s what happens to your work in physicaLMS at the end of semester.

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Here’s what happens to your work in the traditional LMS at the end of the semester

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Oh and physical LMS comes in 3 sizes:

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Tall
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Grande
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Venti

 

Stay tuned for our next product! It does all the things that the physicaLMS does only online! Like an online binder!

featured image credit:”pen and paper” flickr photo by mlpdesign https://flickr.com/photos/mlpdesign/23643416 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license
GIFs of physicaLMS in action source: https://www.youtube.com/w-goSoxUfzE
Delete gif source: https://giphy.com/gifs/P7PmvHY6kzAqY

Getting To Open

Resources for Getting to Open Session at Advancing Learning 2017
Terry Greene and Dennis Vanderspek

This page includes links to things mentioned in our talk today.

Presentation Slide Deck

5 Rs of Open by David Wiley

Where some of the background images came from https://search.creativecommons.org/

Where the others did: https://unsplash.com/

Domain of One’s Own reading: https://www.wired.com/insights/2012/07/a-domain-of-ones-own/

Farm of One’s Own http://cgfarm.ca/farmsite/example_portfolio.html (also set up instructions for this project

The Teaching Hub – LDS Department Blog https://fleminglds.wordpress.com/category/teaching-hub/

A Spartan LMS: What should go in LMS and what can be out there in the wild.

https://unsplash.com/@jorisoi Shared under Creative Commons Public Domain CC0

 

 

Is There a Problem Here? An Instructional Alternate Reality Game

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

It’s not too late to share this. This is the biggest thing I can give to the Creative Commons. I made it well before I knew about The Commons and am only now remembering to do this. This is many many hours of my time. This is the scholarly project which completed my M.Sc. in Instructional Design and Technology.

It is an exercise in embedding instruction into an alternate reality game. Or it’s an exercise in deeply embedding narrative into learning. Either way I tried my best and I want the commons to have it.

It is an alternate reality game in which players need to learn about problem gambling behaviors and harm reduction strategies in order to bring a story to its end. That story is the dognapping of a mildly famous and much-loved English Mastiff.

Oh and it’s so low tech it’s hardly ed-tech at all.

Chance on the Rick Mercer Report

Here is the zip file of all the pieces to the game Missing Chance. The main piece to look for to guide you through are the ‘Puppet Master Instructions’. Here is a little excerpt:

The Story:
Jack Berlian is a YMCA board member who fought to get the original funding for the Youth Gambling Awareness Program. He was one of the first people to realize the potential harm that gambling is doing to our youth and was in a position to do something about it. We just found out that his dog, Chance, has gone missing from the YMCA and there was a clue that made him think that Chance was stolen to help pay off a gambling debt. Chance is actually a bit of a celebrity dog, so she is worth quite a bit of money. Since we know a little something about risky gambling behaviours and ways to reduce the harm, we are in a unique position to help Jack. You (the puppet master) have been up all night, prior to coming to the YGAP meeting, preparing a plan to help Jack. You feel like this is our chance to pay back Jack’s efforts in creating YGAP, by helping to find Chance. You also feel like this is an opportunity to truly validate all of the work that YGAP does.
The Rabbit Hole:
The beginning of an alternate reality game (ARG) is called a ‘rabbit hole’. This is the point at which we enter the alternate reality of the game. For this game, the rabbit hole is simply the lost dog poster that Jack has prepared to try to get people to help find Chance. This poster will be posted in and around the site that you are running the game, in places
where your game players will likely see it before coming to your session. This will add some ‘reality’ to the story when you tell them that we will be spending our time today trying to help find this dog.
The Puppet Master:
The remainder of the document is a set of instructions for you, the Youth Outreach Worker, to follow in order to take this game to its conclusion. You will be in front and behind the scenes, pulling the puppet strings.

If you know of any organization that works with problem gambling behaviours that might like to use this, let them know about this and let me know if I can help them.

Featured image from: https://unsplash.com/@bkotynski CCO

The Worst

Daily Create 1940: The Worst Decision.

Without a doubt the worst move I’ve ever made was getting involved in this online cesspool known as ds106. It’s really quite disgusting. Here are some of the drawbacks I have endured:

  • Got to know strange Internet characters and interacted with them and have maybe even been able to call them friends. Weirdos with strange names like cogdog and Talky Tina and Jim Groom.
  • Got help from and learned new skills from these same Internet characters.
  • Practiced with and got much better at many uselesss tools like Photoshop, WordPress and general Internetting and other useless skills like writing and sharing. (is sharing a skill? I think so.)
  • Found new favorite writers to follow like Hack Education, Gardner Campbell and the aforementioned Internet weirdos.
  • Found other weird communities to get stuff from and give stuff to like Creative Commons and Virtually Connecting.
  • Generally fallen for sharing things through the Internet thing, probably annoying everyone who comes into contact with this stuff.
  • Probably a bunch of other things that I’m too emotional to remember right now.

Thanks a lot ds106.

Faetured image: “Bad” flickr photo by nathanmac87 https://flickr.com/photos/nathanmac87/7571070554 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

The Ghost of CC Future

The whole reason the Ghost of Christmas Future shows up is just to say “Don’t eff this up, Ebenezer. Get your act together and avoid your terrible future”. It worked for that cranky old bastard and it could work for us.

On Saturday at The Creative Commons Global Summit in Toronto, Ashe Dryden showed us some of our past futures. Things that we used to think might be our future. What I take from that is the need to think about the things that could have happened, the things we hoped would happen, the things we hoped wouldn’t happen and what actually did happen to help us try to forge the best future that we can. The ruby red-lipped, shark people of Jupiter with 8-pack abs have not yet taken over, but we still want to avoid it. Maybe they are super chill, though, so who knows?

So in that spirit, I want to make sure I don’t squander the opportunities that attending the #CCSummit afforded me and forge the best path that I can from here. If Scrooge can do it, I can, too.

Here’s my quick list. It is not exhaustive of all the things I want to take from the summit, but it’s my start:

  • Read my signed copy of ‘Made With Creative Commons”.

Popping into Helen DeWaard’s Virtually Connecting Session with Rajiv Jhangiani (@thatpsychprof)

  • Get CC certified and hope that they go with tattoos as their form of certificate/badge because that would be tight.
  • Use those pretty pictures on unsplash. Hopefully they can get themselves a button on the CC Search page. Found a pretty sweet one of a ‘ghost’ for the featured image of this post, I think.
  • Finish colouring my Women of The Commons colouring book if I can get it back from Alice.

  • Work to put a project in place to make sure we’re using all of the open textbooks that we can and move towards contributing as well. All the amazing work BC Campus has done for open textbooks is soon going to be adopted by eCampusOntario so that we can join the party, too!
  • Convince Matt Ryan and Tom Jenkins to get on Twitter and join the party.

What’s your CC future?

 

Feature photo: https://unsplash.com/@luisdelrio

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

p.s. Here are the culprits who broke the news/Internet

 

Digital Pedagogy: It’s Like Riding a Digital Bike

The saying, ‘it’s like riding a bike’ means you just don’t forget. Even if you don’t use a skill for a long time. You can pick it right back up. I can see that has truth to it, but it got me thinking about what it is actually like to learn to ride a bike.

It starts out with just about as much support as possible. A grown up literally supporting you, balancing you, giving you instant feedback and encouragement. And oh the rush of emotion when you actually do it on your own! Just a few months ago, I witnessed this happen. The boy shouting “I’m doing it! I’m doing it!” as he rode away for the first time. It struck me that I witnessed an event that boy would probably remember for the rest of his life.

After that first time you ride away from your support person, what kind of ‘formal’ instruction do you really get or want in your bike riding skill acquisition program? Not much at all, really. Now it’s all about experiential learning. You learn from the crashes what not to do. You learn from exhilaration what to do. You try different bikes and they feel weird at first, but then you figure it out. You roll over new terrain shaky at first, but then you get used to it and enjoy the challenge.

I can remember most of the actual instructional events in my life to do with biking. Probably because they are so few and far between. Any formal tips or tricks for biking have been searched and sought out on my own here and there in magazines or from other cyclists and I have just been ‘experientially learning’ the rest of the way (the experientalliest learning being the year I spent as a bike courier.)

But I digress and lose sight of the point I haven’t yet made. So, to review what I’ve been trying to say: learning to ride a bike includes large amounts of start up support and then you’re mostly on your own.

I think that the bike-learning methodology is kind of what it’s like to wade into the digital world as an educator. You can find those opportunities for the start up support to get going, but from there you’re on your own to choose your path. Going into new systems is like trying out a new, different bike. WordPress might be your all purpose commuter and a flat-tired unicyle might be your Learning Management System. And like biking, you can get more out of it by adding some accessories (Slack, Twitter, etc) and joining a club or community (Virtually Connecting, #OpenLearning17, #ds106 etc.). Your friends are here to help, but it’s up to you to ride through new terrain and feel the wind blow your hair back. It’s great fun that you have to work for.

“Bike near campground First Landing State Park” flickr photo by vastateparksstaff https://flickr.com/photos/vastateparksstaff/33089545372 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

featured photo: “riding bikes” flickr photo by jonny.hunter https://flickr.com/photos/jonnyhunter/1043775061 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

 

 

First Steps to A Farm of One’s Own

This post’s purpose is to help the Fleming College Sustainable Agriculture Program take their first steps into the Farm of One’s Own project. It is here as an example of what a post on a WordPress domain might look like.

First off, one thing you can do to add some excitement to your posts is to use Creative Commons Search to find pretty pictures that you are free to use because of open licensing. Like this:

But make sure you give attribution! Photo credit: “100_3695” flickr photo by dugsong https://flickr.com/photos/dugsong/4164468894 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

by the way, that featured image of the boots at the top gets attribution, too! “Clagett Farm Fall Festival 2009” flickr photo by krossbow https://flickr.com/photos/krossbow/4004610129 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

You can add your own images, too, of course! You may even want to be cool about it and openly license your images for others to use!

Another thing you can do is easily pop YouTube videos into your posts. All you have to do is copy and paste the URL into the page and it will embed itself! See it in action below:

And then you have a nice little video embedded right into the page. You can add your own videos to YouTube in order to do this, or use videos already on Youtube. Hopefully the video you post hasn’t broken any copyright rules by being posted. You may want to look into that.

Below is an example of a YouTube video embedded right on in the page. It is relevant to this post because it explains something you need to know about WordPress. It explains the difference between a ‘page’ and a ‘post’.

Another thing you can do is link to other posts or pages. Maybe you will want to link to one of your classmate’s domains when you are writing about where you got your inspiration for an idea, or perhaps to the original Farm of One’s Own page, or even another post on your own domain.

Your FoOO domain will be your space to grow as you reflect and share your Sustainable Ag experiences. You will also teach & learn with your peers as your domain takes shape.

Phase 1 of this project will be for you to reflectively blog while you are off on your co-op experiences. This will be a way to keep in touch with and learn from your peers and see all the other farms your peers are working with. You may even get lucky and not have to do a ‘what I did on my summer vacation’ presentation when you get back, because we will all know about each other’s experiences already!

So, let’s get started with these start-up instructions: Getting Started with WordPress SAG (Thank you to Dennis Vanderspek from COMM 201 for the starting point instructions btw)

The Open Ed Workout

Open Education is like going to the gym. Lifting the same weights together isn’t really what we’re doing (unless we work directly together) but mostly we’re just lifting our own weights and working out in the same place. We’re in the Open Ed Gym getting ideas from each other’s workouts, generally working towards similar goals and gaining inspiration and motivation from each other.

What’s in your Open Ed Workout? Domain of One’s Own? ds106Virtually Connecting? Bryan Alexander’s Book Club? Open Learning 17NetNarr? Antigonish 2.0?

#FeeltheLearn

photo credit “Workout” flickr photo by Carlos Varela https://flickr.com/photos/c32/3173303193 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license